Plug-in hybrid cruise ship sets sail

By Jack Burke15 December 2021

Battery pack has capacity of 61000 kW hours

The Havila Capella, powered in part by what was dubbed the world’s largest ship battery, embarked on her maiden voyage along the Norwegian coastline.

The 124-m ship is the first of Havila Kystruten’s vessels that will sail the traditional coastal voyage from Bergen to Kirkenes. The vessel’s NOx emissions are 90% lower than similar vessels, and a hybrid gas-electric propulsion system cuts CO2-emissions by 25%.

“Havila Capella is equipped with the world’s largest ship battery, can sail four hours with zero emissions, and can utilize onshore power supply from hydropower to charge the battery,” said Gunnar Larsen, CEO of HAV Group. “This allows Havila Kystruten to meet the requirements for emission-free sailing in the Norwegian world heritage fjords several years before the government’s requirements come into force. HAV Group is proud to have played a key role in realizing this.”

Havila Capella has embarked on her maiden voyage along the Norwegian coastline.

HAV Group’s subsidiary companies HAV Design, HAV Hydrogen, Norwegian Electric Systems and Norwegian Greentech have all contributed towards the Havila Capella.

HAV Design has designed the Havila Capella, which contains several technological innovations that help ensure lower operating costs and emissions. Tailored hull and equipment, developed with simulator-based ship design that, amongst other things, takes into account weather, wind and wave conditions along the route, has resulted in a vessel that is significantly more energy efficient and environmentally friendly than what Norwegian authorities have specified in its tender qualifications to operate the coastal route.

Norwegian Electric Systems (NES) has delivered one of the world’s largest ship battery packs to the vessel, as well as a hybrid gas-electric propulsion system and smart control systems for the entire vessel. The battery pack has a capacity of 6100 kW hours, more than twice as much as the largest battery ferries. NES has also supplied the integrated navigation system Raven INS, generators, complete switchboard system, transformers, frequency converters for thruster engines and the ship’s energy management system.

Kongsberg delivered Bergen gas engines to Havila Kystruten and the ship’s main propulsion, meanwhile, stems from a KM Azipull-PM (Permanent Magnet) unit with an L-drive configuration. Noted for outstanding hydrodynamic efficiency, the AZP-PM also proffers the advantage of a compact installation footprint as its motor is housed within the mounting flange diameter.

Similarly, the KM permanent magnet technology used on Havila Capella’s tunnel thrusters combines space-saving convenience with low-noise, low-vibration and high-performance operation.

Further, the onboard propulsion system has been prepared for future retrofitting of hydrogen and fuel cell technology. With hydrogen energy, the ship will be able to sail emission-free for significant parts of the coastal route.

Norwegian Greentech (NGT) has supplied Havila Capella’s ballast water treatment system.

With support from the Norwegian Research Council, Innovation Norway and Enova, Havila Kystruten and HAV Group’s subsidiaries HAV Design, NES and HAV Hydrogen are currently developing a high-capacity hydrogen energy system that can be used onboard one of Havila Kystruten’s coastal cruise ships. The project is called FreeCO2AST and is also supported by research institutions Sintef Ocean and Protech.

“We congratulate Havila Kystruten with having the guts and willpower to realise the impressive environmental ambitions for the Havila Capella. We are proud to have designed, developed and equipped this innovative vessel,” said Larsen.

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